Book Number 1: Starter for Ten by David Nicholls

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Starter for Ten by David Nicholls

Starter for Ten by David Nicholls

Thursday 1st January – Monday 5th January
Genre: Fiction – Contemporary

I really enjoyed “One Day” and saw this come up for free on the iBook store, so I thought I’d give this a go…

The book follows Brian, a first year university student who is desperate to get on University Challenge. He falls madly in love with Alice, another team member, and the book follows him at University pursuing Alice and getting ready for University Challenge.

The book looks at class, with the contrast between Alice, a rich upper class girl, and Brian a working class teen, as well as some of the social and political issues of the 80s.

I have to be honest, whilst the book was well written, and the story was fun and interesting, I just didn’t like Brian. I thought he was a bit of an idiot, and because of that I found it difficult to like him and root for him. I also didn’t particularly like Alice either, and even Rebecca was difficult to really like.

So, all in all, not a bad read, I quite enjoyed it, it was funny and interesting, but difficult to really enjoy as I didn’t like the characters very much…

Next: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

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2014 – A year in review…

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Well, it started off well, but tailed off towards the end of the year. I had a major life event and unfortunately my reading went out of the window…

So I managed 34 books, lots more graphic novels this year, and lots of fantasy and science fiction. I’ve read more on my iPad this year, especially comic books which I find a lot easier to get hold of and to read on it too.

I didn’t manage to fulfil my A-Z challenge or my goal of 50 books, but onwards and upwards, and this year is a new challenge.

I hope to read 50 books this year – hopefully I’ll get there, I feel back on track with my reading now, and I’m really enjoying curling up with a book in this horrible British winter weather…

Thanks for reading my blog last year, I’m all up to date with last year’s reviews now, and can start on 2015’s…!

TTFN,
Laura

Book Number 34: Next book: The Walking Dead Volume 3: Safety Behind Bars by Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard

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Last of the year…

Next book: The Walking Dead Volume 3: Safety Behind Bars by Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard

Next book: The Walking Dead Volume 3: Safety Behind Bars by Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard

139 pages
Genre Fiction (Graphic Novel – Horror)
Wednesday 24th December – Friday 26th December (3 days)
2 afternoon, 1 evening.

Hot on the heels of the last volume, I picked up this one… we see the group move away from the farm after the disastrous events of the last volume, and stumble upon a prison. The group start to make their way through, clearing each block and securing, in the hope that this is the perfect place for them to settle, and Lori to have her baby.

However, as you would expect, things don’t go according to plan, and the group find some surviving prisoners who are not all as innocent as you would expect… things start going horribly wrong, and the group also discover that whether you die at the hands of a zombie or not, you still turn…

Again, another great instalment of the series, perfectly timed and tense, with a great look into human nature and how we act when faced with disaster. Artwork was amazing again as well!

Book Number 33: The Walking Dead Volume 2: Miles Behind Us by Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard

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Next in the series…

The Walking Dead Volume 2: Miles Behind Us by Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard

The Walking Dead Volume 2: Miles Behind Us by Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard

138 pages
Genre Fiction (Graphic Novel – Horror)
Wednesday 19th November (1 day)
1 evening.

I’m really enjoying this series, although I’m finding it hard to keep track of both stories when watching it with the TV series as well. In this volume, the group move on from Shane’s death, and find Hershel’s farm, where they briefly find some shelter.

As usual, the story is brilliant, lots of tense moments, people finding solace in each other and then falling apart, terrible things happening, and characters desperately trying to survive in a hostile world. Life has become very different for the characters, and they struggle to get through the events that unfold.

The artwork in these books is amazing, I love the style, and spent a long time poring over the pictures and imagery as well as the story. Can’t wait for the next instalment.

Next book: The Walking Dead Volume 3: Safety Behind Bars by Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard

Book Number 32: The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

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A recommendation from a friend…

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

327 pages
Genre Fiction (Contemporary)
Tuesday 28th October – Friday 14th November (18 days)
3 morning, 1 afternoon, 3 evening.

A recommendation from a friend, and I’m glad she did… this book was great!

Don Tillman is a professor with Aspergers syndrome who only has two friends. His life is regimented, he has set plans and routines, that he doesn’t like to stray from. However, he wants to find a wife…

He makes a questionnaire in which to vet women to find his perfect date, from whether they smoke, to their interests, this survey is strict and only women who answer the majority of the questions correctly will make their way through his strict criteria.

However, he meets Rosie, who is very different, doesn’t fulfil his criteria and messes with his life… but she needs help finding her father, and Don finds himself very drawn to her and her problem.

Over the course of the book, they work together on The Father Project, and inevitably get closer…

This book was warm and funny, a real page turner and a really good look at people with Aspergers. I found the theme of the Aspergers was well written, and from what I know, it seemed pretty accurate, although I do not know much about the subject… It looks at relationships in a very realistic way, I never felt that the book was cliched at any point, the characters seemed very real. Well worth a read, very entertaining and interesting.

Next book: The Walking Dead Volume 2: Miles Behind Us by Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard

Book Number 31: PopCo by Scarlett Thomas

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A re-read…

PopCo by Scarlett Thomas

PopCo by Scarlett Thomas

450 pages
Genre Fiction (Fantasy)
Wednesday 27th August – Tuesday 28th October (63 days)
11 morning, 1 afternoon, 9 evening, 1 night.

I’ve read this before – I really like Scarlett Thomas’s work, and as an added bonus she often writes stories based where I live…

The book follows Alice, an employee of PopCo – a big toy company. She is off on a retreat with the company to a remote mansion in Devon to create the next new craze for kids. Alice has an unusual past as her grandparents, who raised her, were cryptanalysts. She creates crossword puzzles, and a spy kit for kids.

Alice struggles with the commercialism and ethics of PopCo, and over the course of her time at the retreat she gets involved with people with similar thinking to her, and there is a subplot about her parents and grandparents involving codes and hidden treasure.

I love this book, it’s full of intrigue and interesting ideas about the media and big corporations, as well as the sub plot about coding, puzzles, Bletchley Park and the hidden treasure… despite Alice’s belief in homeopathy, I really like her and her development of character, I find her and the friends she makes at the retreat interesting, and the arguments, discussions and themes brought up in the book are pretty enthralling too. I had left it long enough to not quite remember bits of the story, and found it just as good as the first time I read it.

Next book: The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

A-Z Reading Challenge 2014 – August

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Only 1 new book for the list this month…

A: A Storm of Swords 1: Steel and Snow by George R. R. Martin
B: Blood Sucking Fiends by Christopher Moore
C:
D:
E:
F: Fables Volume 6: Homelands by Bill Willingham, Mark Buckingham, David Hahn and Steve Leialoha
G: Ghost World by Daniel Clowes
H:
I: Island of the Sequined Love Nun by Christopher Moore
J:
K: Know Your Onions / Web Design by Drew De Soto
L:
M: ‘Make Good Art’ speech by Neil Gaiman
N:
O:
P: PopCo by Scarlett Thomas
Q:
R: Running Like a Girl by Alexandra Heminsley
S:
T: The Wilful Princess and the Piebald Prince by Robin Hobb
U: Unwholly by Neal Shusterman
V: Visual Aid by Draught Associates
W:
X:
Y: You Suck by Christopher Moore
Z:

TTFN,

Laura